Overcoming drug-resistant bacteria

08 July 2016

Associate Professor Brent Copp has received an Auckland Medical Research Foundation Grant for his project, Restoring the activity of antibiotics towards drug-resistant bacteria.

Brent and his team have recently discovered a class of compounds that restore the activity of antibiotics against drug resistant bacteria – enhancing the activity of the antibiotic doxycycline towards the normally drug resistant bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The project involves the synthesis and biological evaluations of new molecules based around his team’s discovery, providing proof of concept as to whether such compounds can be used to ‘rehabilitate’ old antibiotics, and to thereby restore their effectiveness to aid in the fight against drug-resistant bacterial infections.

“It seems almost every other day there are articles in the media regarding the resurgence of antibiotic resistance and what life might be like in a post-antibiotic society," says Brent. "We’re extremely grateful for this funding from AMRF, as it will allow us to accelerate our research in an area of medicine that is desperate for new ideas and innovation.”